Live Blog: 2013 Le Mans 24 Hours (Sun-Wed)
Toyota Europe

TOYOTA Racing 2013 Team Photo

The jewel in the crown of the FIA World Endurance Championship is closing in quick. The 90th anniversary of the Le Mans 24 Hours started earlier this week with Scrutineering on Sunday and Monday. Track action begins on Wednesday afternoon and we will be bringing all the action to you live on our social channels throughout the race week. Follow our live race blog after the break.

 

 

 

 


Social Resources
Le Mans Week so far…
Gallery (Sunday-Tuesday)
Hybrid Revolution
Free Practice
Free Practice Gallery
Qualifying 1
Qualifying 1 Gallery
Live Twitter Feed


Official Twitter hashtags

Social Resources

Official TOYOTA Racing Twitter: @Toyota_Hybrid
Toyota Motorsport GmbH Facebook: www.facebook.com/ToyotaMotorsport
Toyota Europe YouTube Channel: www.youtube.com/ToyotaEurope

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Le Mans Week so far…

Updated: 19/06/13 14:30 CET

Scrutineering

Most of the TOYOTA Racing team arrived over the weekend in preparation for last Sunday’s Le Mans 24 Hours Scrutineering at Place de la République in the city centre of Le Mans. Both cars and drivers were checked to see if everything from aero parts to race overalls conformed with regulations.

Kazuki Nakajima missed Sunday’s activities as he was just completing his duties for Super GT, completing driver scrutineering on Monday.

Our own Toyota Europe film crew also arrived to film throughout the week. We had a unique chance to take the covers off the cars and bring them out for a film and photo shoot on Monday. Keep an eye out on our channels for our Le Mans 24 Hours documentary and review after the race weekend.

Beauty shot

Stéphane Sarrazin spoke to us with a review of the week so far:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uEehl10R-7s

On Tuesday, the weather turned as we all waited for a window to open for our official team photograph. Luckily, as we opened the gates between the pit lane and track, the rain held off and we completed our photo mission. Our drivers continued on for a 90 min autograph session in the pit lane with good attendance despite it being a Tuesday.

Drivers and their chariots

Here’s Nicolas Lapierre giving us a run down of what’s coming up next:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hmfLXpM7ilM

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Gallery (Sunday-Tuesday)

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Hybrid Revolution

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HM26Aet0MKo

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Free Practice

#8 heading out

Updated: 19/06/13 20:10 CET

We finished Le Mans Week’s only Free Practice session in P5 with the # 7 car and P4 with the # 8 car. The session was disrupted by both the weather and stoppages caused by incidents on track. Eventually, the session was abandoned 30min before the scheduled end when the barriers could not be repaired on time.

During the official Le Mans Test two weekends ago, unpredictable weather meant that the entire field ran mostly under wet conditions. The start of today’s Free Practice gave everyone a chance to try out dry set up, basically for the first time.

Wednesday morning saw a massive thunderstorm descend on Circuit de la Sarthe, made worse by the deluge drenching the track and paddocks.

TOYOTA Racing garage

First out on track at the green light were Nicolas Lapierre in the #7 and Sebastien Buemi in the #8. The track kept slippery throughout the first hour before the first red flag fell, putting everything on hold.

Next in the TOYOTA Racing TS030 HYBRID were Alexander Wurz in the #7 and Anthony Davidson in the #8 when the rain fell. Lap times up and down the field remained high as the track quickly picked up more moisture.

The final drivers from each car, Kazuki Nakajima in the #7 and Stéphane Sarrazin in the #8, traded 4th and 5th places as the track dried. Both returned to the garage when the second and final red flag fell which eventually saw the session coming to an early close.

Free Practice Results:
#7 3:30.866 P5
#8 3:29.573 P4

Coming up next is the first of three Qualifying sessions from 22:00-00:00 CET tonight.

Fabien Barthez paid us a visit

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Free Practice Gallery

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Qualifying 1

Updated: 20/06/13 02:00 CET

Night time running

The first qualifying session of the race week started as dusk set in over Circuit de la Sarthe. Both cars went out as the lights turned green on the dot of 22:00 CET.

First to take on the track were Kazuki Nakajima in #7 and Stéphane Sarrazin in #8. Track and air temperatures stayed around the mid-20°C mark while humidity increased to nearly 90% as the session ended.

For the second time today, the session was cut short as an incident caused significant damage to 7 metres of barriers. Race Director, Edoardo Freitas, decided that the extent of the damage was too great for the session to continue in safety, calling off the session with some 50min left.

Blurry night time shot

Kazuki started off well going P2 on his first flying lap. All drivers are required to complete five timed laps in during the two night Qualifying sessions, while the grid position is based on the fastest lap time set per car.

Stéphane came in P5 after his first lap while Kazuki improved his time on lap two but dropped to P3.

First set of driver changes saw Nicolas Lapierre take the wheel of #7 and Anthony Davidson getting in the #8. Halfway through the session, #7 was in P4 +4.3s and #8 P6 +8.4s. Our cars kept the same positions and gaps when the session was abandoned.

Just before the session ended, however, Sébastien Buemi took over the #8 but slowed and stopped at the entry to Indianapolis and Arnage. The exact reason for the stop is yet to be determined. We’ll update this blog when we have more information from the team.

Qualifying 1 Result:
#7 3:26.676 P4
#8 3:30.841 P6

“I had a good run in qualifying but we want to show more performance. We are still working to maximise our performance for the whole race more than the qualifying. There is more work to do but it was a constructive day and we know where we need to improve. We will be concentrating on our race because that is what matters.
– Kazuki

 

“I basically did 10 corners in qualifying; I got to Indianapolis then I had the issue. So I can’t say much about the car this evening, but my team-mates were happy with the general feeling. Unfortunately we had the driveline issue but the red flag came out at the same time so we didn’t actually lose any laps as a result.”
– Sébastien

We’ll be back tomorrow for Qualifying 2 from 19:00-21:00 CET. Qualifying 3 follows from 22:00-00:00 CET.

Electrifying La Sarthe

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Qualifying 1 Gallery

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Live Twitter Feed


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